Note: This blog first appeared on www.SoulDegree.com/blog.
It was one month ago--March 13--that my kids’ schools were shut down because of Coronavirus. When the announcement of the closure came, it was paired with the news that schools would reopen today, April 13. Well, you can guess...my kids are not in school today. At least not physically. Attendance at school here in Virginia has been canceled for the remainder of the year.
In honor of this one month of being more or less locked in and, in homage to David Letterman for no particular reason at all, I thought I’d put together a Top 10 List, as Letterman used to do on his Late Show. So, here now are the:
Top 10 Things I Have Done (or Haven’t Done) Since Corona Kicked In
10. Learned (just now) that Google Docs does not allow a writer to create a numbered list in reverse order. You have to just type “10” yourself. And then “9” and “8” and so on.
9. Made grand plans, still only partially executed, to record a corona-inspired version of an 80s pop-song and have it go totally viral. Can’t tell you which one, for fear one of you will steal this incredible idea, and with it, my family’s future Tik-Tok fame.
8. Walked the dog.
7. Zoomed more than any time since I was a 1970s kid.
6. Baked bread and wondered why the hell the stores don’t have yeast in stock. Sure, I am baking bread now. But, is everyone baking bread? Why?
5. Walked the dog.
4. Built a hot-tub. Seriously, my kids and I did this and it is probably--no, definitely--the greatest accomplishment of our Corona shut-in. It’s the kind of thing we would have talked about for some time if Corona never existed but likely never would have done because...life. But, now that life is so on hold, man, there is time to build a hot tub. Here is the idea we used with some modifications.
3. Learned the bass riff to Seven Nation Army by White Stripes, thanks to the tutelage of my kids. See Item #4 about things we do when life is on hold.
2. Walked the dog.
And, the Number One thing I have done (or haven’t done) since Corona kicked in….
Stood 6 feet away from friends and strangers! As have you, I have walked down the sidewalk (with the dog) and veered on to the road to avoid my fellow human coming the other way. Waited for my turn to get an eggplant in the produce section while another customer chose just the right head of broccoli. Chatted with my neighbor from my front porch to hers with that slightly awkward recognition that we can’t get any closer.
There you have it! If you read my last blog (on April 1), it drew on the wisdom of both .38 Special and poet Robert Burns to talk about the making and implementation of plans. You can see from my top-ten list, no great plans have (yet) been accomplished in the past month (aside from the hot tub). But, there remain several that I pursue daily but which didn’t make the Top 10 List: maintaining and improving my physical and mental fitness, being a helping-hand in my community, finding quality time with my kids, exploring creative outlets in writing or other endeavours, and so on. Little by little.
May you and yours be healthy and safe, may you find meaning and community in these challenging times, and may the pursuit of your most cherished plans bring you joy.